REVIEW: Julien C. Mirivel and Alexander Lyon — Positive Communication for Leaders (BOOK)
Good neighbors make good bosses, in a nutshell — Julien C. Mirivel and Alexander Lyon write in their new book, Positive Communication for Leaders: Proven Strategies for Inspiring Unity and Effecting Change. In its pages, they elaborate on how adhering to a model they personally developed can effectively be a change agent for the better in one’s personal, professional, and interpersonal practices and rituals. “A paradigm shift is taking place across organizations and contexts.
People are no longer willing to work in an environment where they will be treated poorly, used, or abused. Employees today expect to feel valued and respected. They want to develop and grow professionally and be part of a positive culture,” Mirivel and Lyon write. “The rapid development and use of technology and the global pandemic have made this more challenging. In 2018, for example, only approximately 5.7 percent of employees in the United States worked remotely on a full-time basis. By 2022 that percentage had jumped to 26 percent. The vast majority of employees now work remotely at least some of the time. Some occupations and entire organizations are now entirely remote.”
It’s striking how succinctly Mirivel and Lyon are able to capture something becoming increasingly the norm in a bottle. Often leadership and business advice books about the post-modern workplace can feel pedantic, overlong, and somewhat prone to excess ego-stroking on behalf of the authors. Often the authors themselves can become victims of their own irony, becoming the very stock they are criticizing with the publication of the book. Not Mirivel and Lyon, simply because they remain objective even when emphasizing the personal. There’s a distinctive model they’ve developed with left-brain thinking, making the more intangible, right-brain aspects of the read feel grounded, and not in danger of meandering into shapeless, ideologically unsound territories. “This book unites our areas of expertise to give you the best road map possible to communicate effectively and positively.
Every chapter will equip you with the tools, techniques, and approaches you’ll need to create high-quality connections, a thriving team, and a positive culture,” Mirivel and Lyon write. “…Most of us will never lead a national soccer team, but we can create the same lasting impact on the people we lead. Take a moment to read again what those around him said about Deschamps as a leader and then answer this question: What would your employees say about you and your leadership? If you practice what you read in this book, you will accomplish what may seem impossible. You will unite your team, improve group cohesion, and create meaningful relationships. On that journey, we wish you the very best.”
It’s that kind of homespun affability on behalf of the duo’s literary communication sealing the deal. It’s not folksy, odd, or disjointing when it comes to the presentation of Mirivel and Lyon’s ideas. Rather, it compliments thematically and ideologically exactly the truthfulness with which their methodology is grounded. “We wrote this book together to merge our personal strengths. We started as peers as doctoral students at the University of Colorado at Boulder. We then worked together as colleagues at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, where we wrote academic articles together, played video games on late Friday afternoons, and became good friends. To this book, Julien brings his passion for using the power of communication to connect more deeply with others,” they write, in the introduction.